An ICC delegation met the Anti-Monopoly Bureau of the Ministry of Commerce of the People’s Republic of China (MOFCOM), the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC), and the State Administration for Industry and Commerce of the People’s Republic of China (SAIC). Anny Tubbs, Co Vice-Chair of the Task Force, was accompanied by a delegation of ICC corporate members as well as representatives from the University of International Business and Economics (UIBE) of Beijing and ICC China.
Ms Tubbs said: “ICC is delighted by the very positive welcome it received and the level of interest Chinese agencies showed in the Toolkit and related compliance advocacy work. All three agencies are clearly aware of challenges companies face to understand and identify compliance risks so they can mitigate these through robust internal controls.
A proactive focus on compliance, as a means of preventing anti-competitive conduct, can help embed a strong compliance culture across all markets, to the ultimate benefit of consumers. ICC will continue to explore means of contributing to such efforts in China with assistance from local experts and advocates,” she added.
This timely opportunity for ICC to update Chinese agencies followed several ICC meetings held in 2014 with antitrust agency representatives from other parts of the world, including meetings with the International Competition Network (ICN), European Competition Network (ECN), Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) and Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN). The ICC Toolkit has also been presented to a wider audience through workshops and initiatives organized in Austria, Canada, France, Malaysia, the Netherlands, Russia, Switzerland, the United Kingdom and the United States among others.
The recent meetings in China were an opportunity for the ICC delegation to explain the goals of the Task Force, the origins of the Toolkit, its contents and the many ways in which ICC members and other supporters of this initiative had initiated discussions and workshops on best practices in corporate compliance programmes since the launch of the Toolkit at the ICN meeting in Warsaw in April 2013. During these meetings, ICC stressed that the work of the Task Force reflected voluntary contributions from corporate and other members to put together a work product that is available free of charge, as a means of disseminating know-how on a topic considered essential by all parties involved.
MOFCOM, NDRC and SAIC leaders expressed their views on the benefits of extending such an initiative to China and Chinese businesses. It was generally felt that as the antimonopoly legislation in China is still comparatively young, more efforts are required to raise awareness across industry and to clarify practical aspects of compliance.
The agencies invited ICC to prepare a Chinese version of the Toolkit and to remain in close contact for the future launch of such materials, as well as other initiatives including the development of guidance tailored to SMEs.
The ICC Commission on Competition gathers over 300 experts on competition law, including legal advisors from industrial and commercial enterprises and lawyers in private practice, from 40 countries. The Commission launched the Task Force on Antitrust Compliance and Advocacy in 2011, an initiative that has developed practical toolkits on antitrust compliance and contributes to deepening the discussion and thought leadership with all stakeholders.
For more information visit ICC Commission on Competition.
Download a copy of the ICC Antitrust Compliance Toolkit.